As a parent, how do you know if homeschooling is perfect for your child? What are the homeschooling pros and cons? If you are considering homeschooling as an educational option for your child, get a pen and paper, as this article focuses on the major pros and cons!
Homeschooling Pros and Cons: The Advantages & Disadvantages of Homeschooling Your Child
To make it easy for you to differentiate between the advantages and the disadvantages of homeschooling, this post has been split into two sections. The first section lists and explains the homeschooling pros (advantages), while the second section covers the cons (disadvantages).
Section 1: Homeschooling Pros
Perhaps flexibility is the most important reason why a lot of parents and guardians prefer homeschooling. This is because there is total freedom and flexibility when it comes to the curriculum and learning styles; they can be tailored to fit the child’s need and understanding. There is no rush or pressure whatsoever.
In fact, if a child has a strong interest in a particular skill or subject, homeschooling is the best way to develop it. Also, for parents looking at instilling some particular manners or values into their children, homeschooling can help achieve them.
#2 Quality Learning
In most Nigerian public schools — and even some private schools — there are over thirty students in a class. In this scenario, teachers cannot keep up with the slow learners, so they lag behind in their studies; however, this is not the case with homeschooling.
Homeschooling helps ensure the child is receiving quality learning, as all the teaching attentions are directed on the child. Similarly, for parents with special needs children who are unable to find a qualtity special needs school for them, homeschooling could be a perfect intervention.
Out of all the homeschooling pros, family bonding is one of the main reasons some parents adopted the schooling method for their children. By homeschooling a child, parents get to spend lots of time with their children and this encourages bonding. Homeschooling allows parents to spend quality and productive time with the children, thereby making it easy for parents to identify the unique abilities of their children.
With homeschooling, parents can be sure never to miss important milestones or pivotal moments in their children’s life. In addition to that, the bond developed during homeschooling has proven to be one of the strongest bonds a parent can have with a child.
With homeschooling, it is easier for children to share their dreams and aspirations with their family; this also enables bonding with siblings and other close family members.
#4 No Peer Pressure & Abuse
When a child is home-schooled, he or she is comfortable in his or her own clothes, as there is no need to worry about wearing outfits from the latest trends. The child would never try to fit into whatever is in vogue at that time. This greatly builds the child’s confidence and self-esteem.
In addition to that, there is no issue of being bullied, no room for negative influence, and no room for any abuse or assault from the outsiders.
To be candid, homeschooling saves parents a whole lot of time that would have been used to engage in a number of school runs. On a typical school morning, parents need to make breakfast, get the children ready, and drive them to school.
With homeschooling, all of these are totally eliminated as all the children have to do is wake up, take a shower and start the day. Very simple and straightforward! It also saves time for homework, school projects and other assignments.
Now that the homeschooling pros have been discussed, let us take a critical look at the downsides.
Section 2: Homeschooling Cons
#1 Societal Pressures
One of the major homeschooling cons is that the parents, as well as the homeschooled kids, are often misunderstood. It could be frustrating for both the children and the parents as they keep explaining to people while they are not in regular school.
When a child is homeschooled, people think he or she lacks exposure and have fewer friends. Having to explain time and time again could be a tad annoying, and people would think the parents are weird. For a parent to homeschool his or her child, he or she has to grow a tough skin and ignore all the comments from people.
#2 Opportunity Cost
Choosing to homeschool a child comes with an “opportunity cost.” A lot of time is needed to plan out the curriculum, write down school notes, explain the educational materials and also ensure the school notes are up to date. It is very difficult to do all these homeschooling works and still maintain a regular salaried job.
Therefore, parents that want to homeschool their children must be ready for the opportunity cost — which is sacrificing being paid in a salaried job — so that they can have the time to teach the children at home. Also, being an introverted parent can be a problem as the parent wouldn’t have the time and space to be himself or herself. Similarly, an extroverted parent might not like to be confined to the four walls of the home, teaching the children.
#3 Fear of Failure
As easy as homeschooling may seem, a lot of parents fear that their children might fail or fall behind in the real world. Because of this, they spend lots of hours on subjects that exhibit their child’s strengths. This is not good enough as the pressure to keep up becomes pretty much intense.
Also, because of the backlash homeschooling receives, parents fear if they have made the right decisions or not. People may be oblivious to the fact that homeschooling is a lot of responsibility. The future of the child’s education is in the hand of the parents that homeschooled him or her, and any slight mistake could make or mar things. This is why the pressure to perform is usually huge.
Homeschooling takes a lot of training, time and effort. For a parent to decide to homeschool his or her child, he or she must have a background in education, especially in technical subjects like Mathematics and Science. Since the parent is solely responsible for the child’s education, it can feel like a whole lot of work.
Another homeschooling con that is related to training is the grading system. Since the parent is likely not a professional in education, he or she might not know the fairest method to grade the child. This is why homeschooling is largely discouraged for secondary school students.
From the aforementioned homeschool pros and cons, it is evident that there are several reasons why you should or should not engage in homeschooling. In reality, the toughest part about homeschooling is actually making that conscious decision to put every sentiment aside and start the homeschooling process.
Not too worry, if you ever consider homeschooling your child, there are tons of resources online that can help you out. You could even connect with parents around the world through online homeschooling forums. Nevertheless, if you want the best schooling experience for your child, it is advisable to your enrol him or her in a school that provides a well-rounded education.